Springfield, MO

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McKenzie Robinson | SBJ

2022 40 Under 40: Derek White

The French’s Food Co. LLC

Posted online

A lot has been written about supply chain disruption. As training manager for The French’s Food Co. LLC, Derek White, 36, helps to keep the mustard flowing by making sure production teams have the training necessary to avoid shutdowns. He has achieved this by establishing a training matrix to ensure specific positions are covered, even during high absenteeism.

Bringing in insights from all team members is a priority for White, who says this builds a sustainable program with support and buy-in from employees.

White joined French’s in 2020, and he says for as long as he is there, he hopes to be a contributor.

“All of us hope that we strike it rich or retire early, but the reality is I just want to make a positive impact and a lasting impression in my family, my career and my community,” he says.

What did you learn the hard way? When I was younger, I always felt like I should be promoted or doing something more but wasn’t doing my current job to the best of my ability. It was only when I started to work harder than was expected of me that I started to get noticed.

Favorite hobby or creative outlet? We are huge Kansas City Chiefs fans. There is something special about the smell of barbecue as you walk up to majestic Arrowhead Stadium that gets the adrenaline pumping.

Favorite local order? Cashew chicken from Canton Inn.


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